UPDATE: Hitchhiker in Shooting Hoax Case to Enter New Plea

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

UPDATE 10/29/12 @ 11:30 a.m.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- A hitchhiker from West Virginia who authorities said falsely claimed to be the victim of a drive-by shooting is due in a Montana courtroom Monday where he is expected to plead guilty.

Ray Dolin of Julian, W.Va., is charged with tampering with evidence, making a false report and obstructing a peace officer.

Authorities say the photographer shot himself in the arm in northeast Montana near Glasgow to gain publicity for a planned memoir about kindness in America.

A Washington state man was jailed in the shooting before Dolin allegedly confessed while being treated in a Veterans Affairs hospital.

The case is before state District Judge John McKeon in Valley County.



UPDATE 9/10/12 @ 3:40 p.m.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- A Montana judge has set an Oct. 29 change of plea hearing in the case of a hitchhiker from West Virginia who authorities say falsely claimed to be the victim of a drive-by shooting.

Monday's order from District Court Judge John McKeon cancels a preliminary hearing set for next week in the case of 39-year-old Ray Dolin of Julian, W. Va. Court officials say McKeon scheduled the plea hearing in response to a request from Dolin's attorney.

Dolin pleaded not guilty last month to charges of tampering with evidence, making a false report and obstructing a peace officer.

Authorities say he shot himself in the arm near Glasgow to gain publicity for a planned photographic memoir about kindness. A Washington state man was jailed in the shooting before Dolin allegedly confessed.



UPDATE 7/5/12 @ 5 p.m.
HELENA, Mont. (AP) -- A Montana prosecutor has filed charges against a hitchhiker who authorities say shot himself in the arm on the side of a remote highway then claimed to be the victim of a drive-by shooting.

The Valley County prosecutor's office on Thursday released court documents charging 39-year-old Ray Dolin of Julian, W.V., with tampering or fabricating physical evidence, false reports to law enforcement authorities and obstructing a police officer.

County Attorney Nickolas Murnion says in the documents that Dolin originally claimed the driver of a maroon pickup truck shot him on June 9 on the side of U.S. Highway 2 outside Glasgow.

The charging documents say Dolin later told investigators that he found a pretty spot on the highway and decided to kill himself but accidentally shot himself in the arm.



UPDATE 6/18/12
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- Authorities say a story offered by a hitchhiker who claimed to be the victim of a drive-by shooting in Montana unraveled when no gun could be found in the pickup of the supposed perpetrator.

Valley County Sheriff Glen Meier said Monday that deputies found a pistol in a field near the scene and traced it to Ray Dolin.

The 39-year-old Dolin had claimed he was shot in the arm without provocation along U.S. Highway 2. Authorities now say he shot himself and made up the rest of the story - apparently to promote a memoir he's writing about kindness.

Dolin is being treated at a hospital. Charges are pending.

Authorities initially charged Lloyd Christopher Danielson III of Tumwater, Wash., in the June 9 shooting. He was cleared four days later.



UPDATE 6/15/12
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- Authorities say a West Virginia man who claimed to be a victim of a drive-by shooting along a rural Montana highway has confessed to shooting himself.

The Valley County sheriff says 39-year-old Ray Dolin of Julian, W. Va., made the acknowledgment Thursday night.

The case remains under investigation and charges are possible but have not been filed.

Dolin claimed he was hitchhiking along U.S. Highway 2 west of Glasgow when the driver of a maroon pickup pulled over and shot him in the arm.

Authorities later arrested a 52-year-old man and charged him felony assault. The charge against Lloyd Christopher Danielson III was dropped Thursday.

Dolin said in an earlier interview he was travelling across the state working on a memoir called "Kindness in America."



UPDATE
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- Prosecutors say they will seek to increase bail to $100,000 on a suspect being held in the weekend shooting of a hitchhiker outside of Glasgow.

52-year-old Lloyd Christopher Danielson III of Tumwater, Wash. is expected to appear Tuesday in Valley County Justice Court on charges of felony assault with a weapon.

He allegedly shot 39-year-old Ray Dolin of Julian, W. Va. in the arm as the victim was hitchhiking along U.S. Highway 2 near Glasgow on Saturday.

Danielson was initially held on $50,000 bail after his arrest in Roosevelt County.

Valley County Attorney Nicholas Murnion says a higher bail is warranted because of the violent nature of the offense and because Danielson is from out of state.



UPDATE
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- A Montana judge has set bail at $50,000 for a Washington state man who allegedly shot and injured a hitchhiker who told authorities he was writing a memoir about kindness.

52-year-old Lloyd Christopher Danielson III made an initial appearance Monday on charges of felony assault and driving under the influence.

He's suspected in the weekend shooting of 39-year-old Roy Dolin of West Virginia along a rural highway leading into the booming Bakken oil fields.

Dolin is expected to fully recover from the gunshot wound in his upper arm.

Valley County Sheriff Glenn Meier says investigators have no motive in the case.

Roy Dolin's father, Melvin, says his son is a photographer who had been hitchhiking to Washington. Authorities say Danielson pulled over near Glasgow and shot him apparently at random.



ORIGINAL STORY
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- Officials say a West Virginia man who is hitchhiking across the country and writing a memoir called "The Kindness of America" was injured in a random drive-by shooting in northeastern Montana.

Valley County Sheriff Glen Meier says 39-year-old Ray Dolin was sitting alongside U.S. Highway 2 west of Glasgow waiting for a ride Saturday when a man drove up, shot him and drove off.

Dolin flagged down a passer-by and was taken to a hospital in Glasgow.

Authorities say 52-year-old Lloyd Christopher Danielson III was arrested in Culbertson, about 100 miles east of Glasgow, about four hours later.

Meier says Danielson remains jailed on suspicion of felony assault with a weapon and driving under the influence.

Danielson is expected to appear in court Monday.


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